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Quotations by Aristotle
AristotleOne way to avoid criticism - There is only one way to avoid criticism: do nothing, say nothing, and be nothing.

What is a friend? - What is a friend? A single soul dwelling in two bodies.

The mark of an educated mind - It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it.

No great mind has ever existed. . . - No great mind has ever existed without a touch of madness.

Wishing to be friends is quick. . . - Wishing to be friends is quick work, but friendship is a slow ripening fruit.

The meaning and purpose of life - Happiness is the meaning and the purpose of life, the whole aim and end of human existence.

Anybody can become angry - Anybody can become angry . . . that is easy, but to be angry with the right person and to the right degree and at the right time and for the right purpose, and in the right way . . . that is not within everybody's power and is not easy.

Excellence is never an accident - Excellence is never an accident. It is always the result of high intention, sincere effort, and intelligent execution; it represents the wise choice of many alternatives - choice, not chance, determines your destiny.

Educated vs. Uneducated - The educated differ from the uneducated as much as the living differ from the dead.

Those who educate children well - Those who educate children well are more to be honored than they who produce them; for these only gave them life, those the art of living well.

I count him braver who overcomes. . . - I count him braver who overcomes his desires than him who conquers his enemies, for the hardest victory is over self.

The aim of art is to represent. . . - The aim of art is to represent not the outward appearance of things, but their inward significance.

Care more for the truth - The high-minded man must care more for the truth than for what people think.

Poetry expresses the universal - Poetry is finer and more philosophical than history; for poetry expresses the universal, and history only the particular.

Any defect unattended by pain - The ridiculous is produced by any defect that is unattended by pain, or fatal consequences; thus, an ugly and deformed countenance does not fail to cause laughter, if it is not occasioned by pain.

Let us be well persuaded that every - Let us be well persuaded that everyone of us possesses happiness in proportion to his virtue and wisdom, and according as he acts in obedience to their suggestion.

The wicked have no stability - The wicked have no stability, for they do not remain in consistency with themselves; they continue friends only for a short time, rejoicing in each other's wickedness.

Friends be the only refuge - In poverty and other misfortunes of life men think friends to be their only refuge. The young they keep out of mischief, to the old they are a comfort and aid in their weakness, and those in the prime of life they incite to noble deeds.

The good of man is the active exercise. . . - The good of man is the active exercise of his soul's faculties In conformity with excellence or virtue . . . Moreover this activity must occupy a complete lifetime; for one swallow does not make spring, nor does one fine day; arid similarly one day or a brief period of happiness does not make a man supremely blessed and happy.

The difference between a historian and a poet - The difference between a historian and a poet is not that one writes in prose and the other in verse -- indeed the writings of Herodotus could be put into verse and yet would still be a kind of history, whether written in metre or not. The real difference is this, that one tells what happened and the other what might happen. For this reason poetry is something more scientific and serous than history, because poetry tends to give general truths while history gives particular facts.

Endowed with the gift of speech - That man is more of a political animal than bees or any other gregarious animals is evident. Nature, as we often say, makes nothing in vain, and man is the only animal whom she has endowed with the gift of speech.

State exists for the sake of good life - A state exists for the sake of a good life, and not for the sake of a life only: if life only were the object, slaves and brute animals might form a state, but they cannot, for they have no share in happiness or in a life of free choice.

Order, symetry, and limitation - The mathematical sciences particularly exhibit order, symmetry, and limitation; and these are the greatest forms of the beautiful.

Earth change over immense period of time - But the whole vital process of the Earth takes place so gradually and in periods of time which are so immense compared with the length of our life, that these changes are not observed, and before their course can be recorded from beginning to end whole nations perish and are destroyed.

The art of governing humankind - All who have meditated on the art of governing humankind have been convinced that the fate of empires depends on the education of youth.